Israeli Crackdowns, Arrests Fail to Stop Jerusalem Protests

Israeli Forces Arresting Growing Numbers of Local Palestinian Leaders

President Trump’s declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel has sparked massive protests for two consecutive weeks, each culminating with the biggest demonstrations on Friday. Israel’s reaction has largely been military, labeling the demonstrations “riots” and trying to crack down on them.

With several killed and hundreds wounded, however, Palestinian protests show no sign of slowing over the weekend, and Israel appears at a loss as to what else to try, and loathe to consider any alternative strategy that doesn’t involve force and threats.

Throughout the past week, leading up to the Friday protests, Israeli forces began arresting hundreds of “community leaders” across Palestine, who they assumed would be key organizers of the bigger rallies.

This too failed, however, and if anything the arrests of so many local leaders of note is fueling protests of its own, and adding to the sense that Israel is rapidly losing control of the situation.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.